God created man to be worshiping Him
Preacher: Felix Ngunjiri
God will appreciate our love towards Him if we sincerely worship Him with all of our hearts. “And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all? And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these” (Mark 12:28-31). “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” (1 Corinthians 2:9). “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). But God gives a lot of hope and assurance to those who worship Him as He commands blessings to run in their families for over thousand generations God reminded the Israelites to “Know therefore that the LORD thy God, he is God, the faithful God, which keepeth covenant and mercy with them that love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations;” (Deut 7:9 [KJV]) If one generation is 40 years long, then God has promised His mercies upon those who love Him and keep His commandments for 40×1000 generations = 40,000 years. That is an eternity full of God’s blessings to those who love Him and worship Him and keep His commandments. In between those thousands of years of God’s blessings upon them that love Him and keep His commandments are blessings for every minute and every second of their lives. “And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the LORD thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God. Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field. Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep. Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store. Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out. The LORD shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways. The LORD shall command the blessing upon thee in thy storehouses, and in all that thou settest thine hand unto; and he shall bless thee in the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee. The LORD shall establish thee an holy people unto himself, as he hath sworn unto thee, if thou shalt keep the commandments of the LORD thy God, and walk in his ways.” (Deut 28:1-9 [KJV])
We Were Made in Heaven
According to the eternal design of God for man, we were created in heaven by God Himself who knew us before we were born. This was revealed much later to the King David and to prophet Jeremiah. “Your eyes saw me when I was formless; all my days were written in Your book and planned before a single one of them began.” (Ps 139:16 [HCSB]) “Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying, Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; and before you came forth out of the womb I sanctified you, and I ordained you a prophet to the nations” (Jeremiah 1:4-5) [NKJV]. God had already sanctified man in heaven and ordained him to be prophet of the nations here on earth that He was planning to create. In other words, God in His eternal wisdom had originally sanctified man before he was born. It is God’s plan for our lives that we realize that we came from heaven where we derive our value and purpose and have our being. “For in Him we live, and move, and have our being. For we are also his offspring” (Acts 17:28). When God created the heaven and the earth, He planned to create man and establish him here on earth to be worshipping and praising Him so that whatever is done in heaven is also being done in earth. We had already been ordained priests in heaven with the divine mandate of spreading God’s Kingdom here on earth. God’s plan for mankind is to have a kingdom of priests and a holy nation here on earth so that He would be surrounded by holy people because He is holy. We were designed by God Himself for that divine purpose. “… You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that you should show forth the praises of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvellous light” (1 Peter 2:9).
God’s Master Plan of Redemption
When man rebelled against God in the Garden of Eden, he was chased out of the Garden and he began a reckless life full of wickedness here on earth. The world was full of violence as man was under the control of the devil. “And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart” (Genesis 6:5-6). “And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them. But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD” (Genesis 6:8). God saved mankind by preserving the lives of Noah and his family from the deadly floods that wiped out every living thing on earth. Long after man had fallen from God’s grace, God then decided to come up with another programme of redeeming man back to Himself. God had to send His Only Begotten Son Jesus Christ here on earth to redeem man back to Himself. Jesus came down from heaven to earth to bring the kingdom of God down to us here on earth. “From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17). Jesus came down from heaven to earth to extend the kingdom of heaven here on earth so as to restore to man the kingdom he had lost in the Garden of Eden. Upon believing that God saves and redeems through the name of Jesus Christ the Son of the Living God, we are then entitled to receive power and authority from God so that we can operate here on earth with power and authority over the enemy the devil. We need God’s power here on earth so that we can destroy all works of the devil in Jesus’ name. God’s purpose for us is to worship Him and glorify His name in whatever we do here on earth. When Jesus was being tempted by the devil, Jesus said to the devil; “… Get behind me, Satan: for it is written, you shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve” (Luke 4:8). Even the devil is expected to worship God because he is a creature like the rest of us and we should all glorify and praise and worship the Lord our God.
Open your mouth now and say to God that “You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for you created all things, and for your pleasure they are and were created” (Revelation 4:11). And an angel said “with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come: and worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters” (Revelation 14:7).
The Promise of Empowerment and the Great Commission
“And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name. And Jesus said to them, I saw Satan as lightning fall from heaven. Look, I give to you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you. Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject to you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven” (Luke 10:17-20). Jesus came to destroy all works of the devil so that those who believe in Him will be given power and authority to rise up against the devil in the name of Jesus so that God is glorified. “For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8). As we destroy works of the devil here on earth, we are extending God’s Kingdom on earth and glorifying our Father who is in heaven. The Bible continues to narrate “…how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him” (Acts 10:38). But before Jesus ascended back to heaven, He assured His disciples and His followers that He would not leave them as orphans here on earth to be tossed right and left by the devil. He told them that He would give them another comforter, the Holy Spirit. When the time came for Jesus to be taken back to the Father in heaven, He said to His disciples that “It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you” (John 16:7). Jesus told them that He “will pray the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you forever” (John 14:16). God had finally come down with His Kingdom down on earth so that God Himself would dwell with His people forever. “Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us” (Matthew 1:23). God had finally come to dwell with His people whom He planned to buy back with His own blood to be shed at the cross at Calvary. “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the Holy Ghost who hath made you overseers (bishops), to feed the church of God, which He hath purchased with His own blood” (Acts 20:28). Jesus Christ, after suffering death on our behalf and resurrecting, showed Himself to His disciples and gave many convincing proofs that He was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the Kingdom of God. On one occasion, while He was eating with them, He gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.” So when they met together, they asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth. After He said this, He was taken up (to heaven) before their very eyes, and a cloud Hid him from their sight” (Acts 1:3-9)[NIV]. Jesus had earlier promised them power when preaching the Gospel to the whole world.“ And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Go therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the world. Amen.” (Matthew 28:18-20). When time came for Jesus Christ to be taken up to heaven, He commissioned His followers to preach the Gospel and extend His Kingdom here on earth. Once you are commissioned to do some assignment, you need to be given the instruments of power to be able to perform that assignment that you have been chosen to do. Jesus had promised to give them power to perform greater miracles than the ones they had seen Him perform. That would enable His followers to continue His work of establishing His Kingdom here on earth by destroying all works of the devil in His name. “Verily, verily, I say to you, He that believes on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go to my Father” (John 14:12). He promised them that as long as they did those works ‘in His name,’ it shall be done to them and for them so that God may be glorified. Jesus assured His followers that “You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that you should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, He may give it to you” (John 15:16).
The Trappings of Power
After Jesus ascended to heaven His disciples and followers, started performing miracles in His name and enjoying the trappings of power. “Peter (who had, for fear of being arrested like Jesus, disowned Jesus when challenged by a young maid) and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms. And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. And he gave heed to them, expecting to receive something of them. Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God” (Acts 3:19). Jesus had successfully installed God’s Kingdom here on earth. And there are indicators that the Kingdom of God is within us. Jesus told His disciples what to look for if they wanted to know whether the kingdom of God is within them. “But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you” (Luke 11:20). He told His disciples that if they could cast out devils in His name, then the Kingdom of God is within them. we have been given authority over the devil! Jesus told His disciples
“And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.” (Mark 16:15-18 [KJV])
“Behold! I have given you authority and power to trample upon serpents and scorpions, and (physical and mental strength and ability) over all the power that the enemy [possesses], and nothing shall in any way harm you” (Luke 10:19).
God wants us to be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation so that we become a blessing to other people and extend God’s Kingdom here on earth. “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvellous light” (1 Peter 2:9). He wants us to be priests who will be entering into His presence holy unto Him, worshipping Him in Spirit and in truth. For “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.” (John 4:24 [KJV])
When you stand in His presence holy and acceptable before Him, you have the dominion and power and authority over every other power here on earth. You will have dominion over everything that creeps on the face of the earth. The ordained priest will have regained the kingdom of heaven that he or she lost in the garden of heaven so that we are like Him, in His likeness, to be like God in nature, goodness, powerful and with authority.